Des chats et des hommes

It’s the coldest night of the month so far and, naturellement, Louis Catorze has picked now to escape out at The Front.

It’s too cold for me to go out looking for him. In fact, it’s too cold even for me to stand at the door for a few minutes and call for him (not that he comes when he’s called). But the thing is that Laurence driving the Plum Van is due to arrive any minute. And, when Catorze and Ocado drivers meet, it’s never pretty.

This evening will end in one of the following ways:

1. Catorze will come in the next time I call him, forever remaining unaware of Laurence’s impending arrival (unlikely).

2. Catorze will sit quietly on the window sill, observe Laurence from afar and allow him to deliver in peace (not a chance in hell).

3. Laurence have to slalom* around a screaming cat whilst he delivers our groceries, before eventually scrambling to safety and screeching off in the Plum Van at top speed (BINGO).

*Yes, I know that slaloming usually involves weaving in and out of many stationary objects, not one moving one. But anyone who has ever met a cat will understand.

Anyway, the little sod is still out there – we don’t know exactly where – and the clock is ticking for Laurence. The only thing that could make this worse would be That Neighbour putting his bins out at the very moment that the carnage kicks off.

Oh. Mon. Dieu.

Où t’es, Louis où t’es?

Ce n’est pas seulement un lit

After coming back from Louis Catorze’s vet appointment on Tuesday, Cat Daddy and I debated how and when to Gabapentin him.

Cat Daddy: “You could do it in the morning.”

Me: “But that’s when he and I have our morning cuddles. Plus it means my day starts with a stress.”

Him: “How about when you come home?”

Me: “…”

Him: “…”

Me: “Can’t you do it?”

Him: “But then he’ll hate me. He needs to have one of us that he can trust.”

[Silence, tumbleweed, crickets.]

Anyway, I drew the short straw and I’m the bad guy. It’s not fun. But if I do it in the morning, because the little sod has the Post-Steroid Hungries, it seems I’m forgiven quite quickly.

In other news 9,083 sleeping spots aren’t enough, and you simply have to look for one more. Preferably one that isn’t anywhere near as nice as the others.

This is one of those times.

For reasons that we cannot fathom – and, quite frankly, nor do we want to – Catorze decided that, today, he wanted to sleep on the Marks and Spencer bag containing my nieces’ and nephews’ presents.

Cats: why? And, please, don’t bother saying “Because cat”. That excuse just doesn’t wash anymore.

I’m not even going to ask.

Plus claire la lumière, plus sombre l’obscurité

What a week it’s been at Le Château. Events include a grovelling apology from me to Ocado on behalf of you-know-who (pretty sure it should be you-know-whom?), a reply from Ocado claiming the right to hazard pay for their traumatised drivers (I think they were only half-joking), and another somewhat unfortunate incident.

On Wednesday night there was a knock at the door at 10:30pm: Marius-Olivian driving the Lemon van, a whole week early?

However, when I checked my Ocado order again I realised that he was actually on time, and that I had messed up: I’d accidentally booked the delivery for this week instead of next week. So, not only was there no room in the fridge for the food because I hadn’t sufficiently run down supplies, but Cat Daddy was still away and there was a greater risk of Catorze-Ocado carnage.

Naturellement, as soon as I opened the door, notre ami shot out and began sniffing around the Ocado crates, getting in the way of Marius-Olivian as he was unloading. He called out, “Go back in, kitty!” Louis Catorze took no notice.

After Marius-Olivian left, waving Catorze a jaunty goodbye as he did so, I felt somewhat relieved; getting in the way of the unloading, whilst not very helpful, wasn’t nearly as bad as him sending yet another driver fleeing in fear. But, alas, the night was not over. It was at that point that the little sod discovered the motion-activated porch light at Bert the dog’s house next door, and the next few minutes went something like this:

1. Cat activates light
2. I reach to grab him
3. He scuttles off out of reach and refuses to be caught
4. I turn around to go indoors
5. Cat activates light again
(Repeat indefinitely, or until one party collapses from frustration and fatigue.)

I couldn’t just go to bed and leave him to annoy yet another set of neighbours – he’s already made us quite unpopular enough – so I was forced to wait until he had finished his game. And he only decided to stop after hearing the local fox’s mating/war cry (still not sure which) and having the uncharacteristically good sense to realise that, if he didn’t come in, he might be eaten.

I can’t cope with this monster on my own. Thank goodness there is only 1 more sleep until Cat Daddy comes home.

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Une livraison spéciale

When you order groceries online from Ocado, there’s a section at the end where customers can warn delivery drivers of potential hazards – steps, thorny shrubs, excitable dogs, that kind of thing. I never imagined I would ever need to write anything, but Louis Catorze’s love of boys – Ocado drivers are almost always male – has taken his nuisance level to new heights lately.

We had a delivery at the weekend and normally the little sod is very pleased indeed to see Ocado drivers but, this time, presumably because Cat Daddy has been away for a few days and he has been deprived of male company as a result, he totally lost his shit. As soon as I opened the door to unsuspecting Deyan driving the Apple van, Catorze decided to race in and out of the door and thunder up and down the stairs multiple times. It’s surprising how loud a 3.5kg cat on bare floorboards can be.

Deyan had clearly never seen anything like it, commenting that the cat was going crazy; then, after going through my receipt and taking my plastic bags back, he made a swift exit. And this is not the first time we have had such an experience: in the past I have had to apologise to quite a few other Ocado drivers including Amil driving the Onion van, who glimpsed a furry cat toy that notre ami had dropped in the hallway and thought it was a rat, and Gary, also driving the Apple van, whom Le Roi almost tripped up in his haste to snuggle him.

One day, Ocado will be able to just turn up, deliver in peace and leave, but I don’t think that day will be anytime soon. In the meantime, I think this wording should cover all eventualities:

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